4th Graders Submit “Happy Birthday, Indiana” Cards

Fourth grade students from around the state are being asked to decorate special, acid-free birthday cards supplied by the library while briefly explaining “Why do you love Indiana?” and “What does being a Hoosier mean to you?” Over the last few months, Rare Books and Manuscripts staff have contacted over 150 educators and parents.

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“It’s been a wild ride” says Bethany Fiechter, Rare Books and Manuscripts Supervisor. “We’ve made new connections between our library, public libraries and schools throughout the state. The student’s thoughtfulness and creativity shines through their work. It continues to be a rewarding experience for us all.” At the end of the project, the State Library’s collection will include a total of 10,000 cards with all 92 counties represented. Laura Eliason, Rare Books and Manuscripts Program Coordinator, has enjoyed seeing cards trickle in, including those from homeschooled children.

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Lauren Patton, Rare Books and Manuscripts Librarian, is “looking forward to seeing what students all over the state will come up with to express their love for Indiana. It’s neat for kids to know their artwork will be saved in the library forever.” Brittany Kropf, Rare Books and Manuscripts Librarian, explains “during Indiana’s tricentennial, researchers and students will have a glimpse into the minds and hearts of Hoosier children of today. We’re making history and that’s pretty cool!”

Fiechter mentions “think of this project as a time capsule – a wonderful collection of children’s perspectives that will be stored for generations to discover in the future.”

Is your county participating?

If your county is listed below, please contact a regional coordinator from the map below or Rare Books and Manuscripts Supervisor, Bethany Fiechter, at bfiechter@library.IN.gov or 317-234-8621.

Participating Counties

Bicentennial Manuscript Regional Coverage Map

Indiana State Library / Manuscripts Bicentennial Regional Coverage Map (pdf)